Clinically relevant interpretation of solid phase assays for HLA antibody

Maria Bettinotti, Andrea A. Zachary, Mary S. Leffell

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Abstract

PURPOSE OF REVIEW: Accurate and timely detection and characterization of human leukocyte antigen (HLA) antibodies are critical for pre-transplant and post-transplant immunological risk assessment. Solid phase immunoassays have provided increased sensitivity and specificity, but test interpretation is not always straightforward. This review will discuss the result interpretation considering technical limitations; assessment of relative antibody strength; and the integration of data for risk stratification from complementary testing and the patientʼs immunological history. RECENT FINDINGS: Laboratory and clinical studies have provided insight into causes of test failures – false positive reactions because of antibodies to denatured HLA antigens and false negative reactions resulting from test interference and/or loss of native epitopes. Test modifications permit detection of complement-binding antibodies and determination of the IgG subclasses. The high degree of specificity of single antigen solid phase immunoassays has revealed the complexity and clinical relevance of antibodies to HLA-C, HLA-DQ, and HLA-DP antigens. Determination of antibody specificity for HLA epitopes enables identification of incompatible antigens not included in test kits. SUMMARY: Detection and characterization of HLA antibodies with solid phase immunoassays has led to increased understanding of the role of those antibodies in graft rejection, improved treatment of antibody-mediated rejection, and increased opportunities for transplantation. However, realization of these benefits requires careful and accurate interpretation of test results.This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 License, where it is permissible to download and share the work provided it is properly cited. The work cannot be changed in any way or used commercially. http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalCurrent Opinion in Organ Transplantation
DOIs
Publication statusAccepted/In press - May 19 2016

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ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Transplantation

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